Currently, of the estimated 62 million tons of MSW generated annually by 377 million people in urban areas and more than 80% of the waste is being disposed of indiscriminately causing serious health and environmental degradation. To dispose the municipal waste, landfills were considered as the best options however if the current 62 million tones annual generation of MSW continue to be dumped without treatment; it will need 3, 40,000 cubic meter of landfill space every day. So reduce the pressure on the landfills, the task force on waste to energy plants has considered to minimize the wastes going to landfill by at least 75% through processing of MSW using appropriate technologies. For the energy starved country like India, in the present scenario waste to energy plants have been considered as one of the suitable options to dispose the municipal waste.
Waste-to-energyor energy-from-waste describes a variety of technologies that convert garbage or municipal solid waste (MSW) into heat, electricity and fuel from the waste using different process incineration, gasification, pyrolysis and anaerobic digestion. However in India also the present focus is more on the incineration based waste to energy plants.
Nevertheless going with the past experiences in India on Waste to Energy plants, there are skeptic views on viability of the waste to energy plants in Indian scenario, as there are number of issues are associated with it. Some of the major hurdles on the success of the waste to energy plants in India are a) improper design to handle Indian wastes and b) inadequate solid waste collection systems c) calorific value of the waste. d) Lack of planning and inter institutional coordination. Apart from the structural problem, another most important issue is the issue of stringent emission standard for dioxins and furans release during the incineration of the waste and the institutional mechanism to monitor these standards. Further there are also issues of livelihood of the waste pickers linked with the waste to energy plants.
In this context Toxics Link is planning to organize a one day national stakeholder conference of the on the issue of waste to energy plants in India with the following objectives:
1. To discuss the viability of the waste to energy plants in the context of India
2. To have a deep understanding on the associated issue of Waste To Energy Plants considering the International experiences
3. To discuss on the existing standards for the waste to energy plants and mechanism to monitor these standards
4. To discuss the issue of livelihood associated with the waste to energy plants
Venue : Indian Habitat Centre, New Delhi.
Date : 30th March 2015